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Episode 4: Escape From Luna II

 

Review by Chris Guanche

July 26, 2001

 

Summary

 

The White Base enters the Federation Forces asteroid base Luna II. Bright meets with commander Wakkein and is told that the refugees can't stay on Luna II. They are to be sent to Earth, and the crew is to be arrested for having unauthorized access to the White Base and the Gundam. Bright protests the orders, and Wakkein's soldiers pull guns on everyone. Amuro yells at several armed soldiers and protests to being treated like a criminal. Bright says that Char will attack them, but Wakkein thinks that's unlikely. He thinks that Bright panics too much and says that an experienced soldier like Char knows his limits. Paolo is taken to the infirmary, and everyone else thrown in the brig. Wakkein's men put metallic seals on the Gundam's joints. Nearby, Char's Musai approaches Luna II, and Dren says they haven't been detected because there are so many Minovsky particles in the area. Char thinks about Sayla and is certain that she isn't his sister Artesia. He thinks Sayla is too brave, but then he thinks again that she might be Artesia. He informs his men that they will be attacking Luna II in normal suits to capture or destroy the White Base and Gundam. They approach the base and kill several soldiers on patrol in space. They see the White Base in the dock as well as a complicated laser security grid surrounding all the ships. Char and his men lay mines all around the exterior. Amuro explains to the others that the Gundam is different from a Zaku because it has a self-learning computer that records combat data. An explosion rocks Luna II, and the loss of artificial gravity flings everyone to the wall. Explosions damage other parts of the base, and Wakkein wonders how Char got inside. A soldier comments that Bright called it correctly, and Wakkein orders the launch of a Magellan class ship.

 

The loss of gravity also means a loss of power, which allows Bright and all the others to escape from the brig. Wakkein boards the Magellan to head outside and fight Char. As his ship passes through the tunnel, Char's mines explode and damage the ship. The Magellan crashes and blocks the exit to space. Amuro, Kai, Hayato and Ryu work to take the seals off the Gundam and get it into battle. Wakkein evacuates his ship and sees people manning the White Base. He pulls a gun on Amuro and tells him that the Gundam is off limits. Bright confronts Wakkein and asks who the real enemy is. Wakkein says he has to follow orders, and Bright counters that he doesn't care about the chain of command. Mirai patches a call in from Paolo, and he tells Wakkein that Bright and the others are the only ones with the experience to fight Char. Wakkein backs down and agrees to do as Paolo says. Amuro and Ryu head into space and are immediately attacked by Char. Amuro's hyper bazooka is destroyed by Char's heat hawk, leaving him with only his beam saber. Bright says the White Base can't exit Luna II unless they destroy the Magellan, so Wakkein has the ship bolted down to fire its cannons at the Magellan. The White Base fires its cannons and destroys the ship. The explosion destroys one of the attacking Zakus and barely misses the Musai. Amuro destroys a Zaku, and the White Base exits the tunnel. Char throws his heat hawk at Amuro and retreats, ending the battle. Bright tells Paolo that they escaped and notices that he's dead. As the White Base leaves Luna II, Wakkein thinks it's a cruel time to live. Later, a funeral service is held, and Bright promises to get the ship to Earth. Paolo's body is placed in a tube and sent into space, and Amuro wonders what happened to his father.

 

Commentary

 

This is probably the first great episode of the series. This episode was almost totally cut out of the compilation movie, with the White Base having only a brief stopover instead of a prolonged ordeal. Here we see that the crew are no longer strangers and are starting to work together. They have to, since they're being antagonized by Char and Wakkein. I don't think that Wakkein really understands the necessities of war, because it's moronic to arrest the only soldiers fighting an enemy like Char. Wakkein's actions show the shortsightedness of the Federation, and Bright raises the point of asking who the real enemy is. Wakkein eventually is talked down by Paolo, which is good, considering what happened. I didn't think that Paolo would last much longer anyway with the type of wounds he had. Char's not going give up so easily, even if the White Base is heading for Earth.

 

Overall Rating

Full StarFull StarFull StarHalf StarNo Star

4 out of 5 stars
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Gundam Episode 4 Gundam Episode 4
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Buy the collection (eps 1-14, 16-22) on Blu-ray or DVD from Amazon
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